Tags: Steve Malzberg Show | Unions | UAW | Volkeswagon | workers | union

Wash. Exam. Tapscott: UAW Defeat Will Hobble Union Expansion

Thursday, 01 May 2014 08:53 PM

By Bill Hoffmann

Last month's vote by auto workers not to unionize at a Volkswagen plant in Tennessee would likely not have happened in a northern state, according to Mark Tapscott, executive editor of the Washington Examiner.

"The odds certainly would've been better [for unionization]," Tapscott told "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV.

"But the fact that it's in Tennessee, and in a very conservative part of Tennessee … you have such a tremendous tradition … across the south of the right to work and individual responsibility."

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Workers at the VW plant in Chattanooga voted 712-626 last month not to join the United Auto Workers. The union wants federal regulators to void the result and hold a new election.

"Frankly, [there is] suspicion of unions like the UAW because … we've seen them bankrupting places like Detroit and almost putting General Motors and Chrysler and, at one point, even Ford out of business," Tapscott said.

"Normal people say, 'I don't want that,' so the UAW lost and that is a big, big deal for them because it probably means they are not going to be able to expand their membership anywhere else in the south and the south is where the auto industry is moving."

Tapscott said the overall power of unions has waned, with only one out of every 10 American workers now a union member. Labor law experts told Reuters on Wednesday that the UAW still has several options to unionize Volkswagen's Tennessee plant. But under U.S. labor law, the union faces a one-year waiting period before it can hold another vote.

The UAW had challenged the results of the vote, accusing anti-union groups of unfair lobbying, but last week abandoned its appeal to the U.S. National Labor Relations Board.

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